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Eta Carinae: A Star on the Brink of Destruction

A huge, billowing pair of gas and dust clouds are captured in this stunning NASA +Hubble Space Telescope mage of the supermassive star +Eta Carinae

Using a combination of image processing techniques (dithering, subsampling and deconvolution), astronomers created one of the highest resolution images of an extended object ever produced by the Hubble Space Telescope. The resulting picture reveals astonishing detail.

Even though Eta Carinae is more than 8,000 light-years away, structures only 10 billion miles across (about the diameter of our solar system) can be distinguished. Dust lanes, tiny condensations, and strange radial streaks all appear with unprecedented clarity.

Eta Carinae was observed by Hubble in September 1995 with the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2). Images taken through red and near-ultraviolet filters were subsequently combined to produce the color image shown. A sequence of eight exposures was necessary to cover the object's huge dynamic range: the outer ejecta blobs are 100,000 times fainter than the brilliant central star.

Eta Carinae was the site of a giant outburst about 150 years ago, when it became one of the brightest stars in the southern sky. Though the star released as much visible light as a supernova explosion, it survived the outburst. Somehow, the explosion produced two polar lobes and a large thin equatorial disk, all moving outward at about 1.5 million miles per hour.

The new observation shows that excess violet light escapes along the equatorial plane between the bipolar lobes. Apparently there is relatively little dusty debris between the lobes down by the star; most of the blue light is able to escape. The lobes, on the other hand, contain large amounts of dust which preferentially absorb blue light, causing the lobes to appear reddish.

Estimated to be 100 times more massive than our +Sun, Eta Carinae may be one of the most massive stars in +Milky Way Galaxy. It radiates about five million times more power than our Sun. The star remains one of the great mysteries of stellar astronomy, and the new Hubble images raise further puzzles. Eventually, this star's outburst may provide unique clues to other, more modest stellar bipolar explosions and to hydrodynamic flows from stars in general.

Source: http://earthspacecircle.blogspot.com/2012/12/eta-carinae-star-on-brink-of-destruction.html
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36 comments
 
Oh My Universe this is amazing :-)
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How do you have access to these amazing photos through N.A.S.A? I would assume these pics r highly confidential

P.S u guys r awesome
Keith H
 
Anyone have a taste for a Starburst fruit chew?
 
So this image is fake. A computer generated image.
 
God is continously showing us...but many of us is still blind. Lets make this world that we borrow a better place to live peacefully.
 
Evidence that God is all-powerful is a lot! In due time, He will bring order to our planet.
 
so, actually this picture is 8000 years ago..
 
+Thompson Thornton Stars may explode (Supernova) or they may just shed (white dwarf). In the case of a Sn, the sun loses it's primary fuel (Hydrogen) so has to start burning denser elements (Helium etc). Without the core burning, there is no outward pressure to keep the suns matter from collapsing under gravity. As it collapses (loss of fuel) the increased gas pressure increases core temperature and the heavier elements are ignited - but there is a limit. The process (just one of 2 theoretical processes) is referred to as core bounce. The outer shell collapses but bounces off the core (core can only collapse so much) releasing a shockwave the literally blows the star apart.

For the smaller stars, well they just shed. As they run out of fuel they pulsate and each pulsation 'blows off' (think a strong solar wind) a portion of the outer shell. This continues until the star is left with it's now dormant core, left to cool over eternity.
 
I love it when hubble share it finding nasa should share all pictures to the world we billtit
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